ABC/ Ida Mae AstuteKelly Clarkson is having a moment. After taking time off to welcome her first child, River Rose, the Grammy-winning singer is back with a new album, Piece by Piece, and a newly announced tour. And Kelly says her contentment with her personal life -- husband, baby and two stepkids -- has her super-excited for the future, whatever it may bring.
"I mean, this is gonna sound so cheesy but I have the most successful marriage and I have the best kids ever and I just feel like anything is possible at this point," Kelly tells ABC Radio. "And I’ve always kinda been that kid, but I just feel like they make me so much more empowered. And I have a couple of other things in the works because they’ve been inspiring me, so we’ll see. It’s going to be a very different next decade."
Those "other things" might include a future stint on Broadway, a country album and more. But for now, Kelly is focusing on Piece by Piece, the album she recorded while she was pregnant with River. Unlike her previous albums, Kelly didn't co-write the bulk of the material, because she had such a difficult pregnancy and was constantly sick. Instead, she recorded songs written by others, and she's pleased with the results.
"This is the first album I didn’t write too much...I just was feeling so down," Kelly tells ABC Radio. "And so it was interesting. I mean, I have a lot of singer-songwriter friends, so that helped! And then, also, it was interesting just to tell people, 'Hey, we’re looking for these kind of songs,'” and to see what everybody submitted. It was a different process for this album, and I loved it."
As a result, Piece by Piece is an interesting mix of upbeat, danceable tunes, heartfelt ballads, a handful of very personal songs written Kelly, a duet with John Legend and two tracks co-written by Sia. "Yeah, it was just a lot of randomness on this album, but it all kind of fit together," Kelly tells ABC Radio. "And [it] was very much just my mood while I was trying to climb out of the rabbit hole of pregnancy."
One unexpected benefit of recording the album while pregnant, Kelly says, was the way she was able to bring extra emotion to the material.
"It is a different thing, it’s hard to describe to people," she says. "Like, you just feel everything a hundred percent more. Everything is enhanced when you’re pregnant. And there are good and bad points of that, ‘cause when I was feeling sick it would be really bad, but when I wasn’t, you’d get these really raw emotional vocals, and they would just be even more vulnerable than normal, so I loved it."
Kelly jokes that she liked that experience so much that she might insist on being "knocked up" for the follow-up to Piece by Piece, too. "I probably will be [pregnant] while recording the next one, 'cause I do want another baby," she laughs.
Meanwhile, the singer will launch her Piece by Piece tour July 11 in Hershey, Pennsylvania. And how different will it be hitting the road with baby River in tow?
"This is gonna sound funny-slash-horrible but I already traveled with two dogs beforehand, so now I’ve just kind of switched out," Kelly laughs. "Dogs are harder! Like, I have a baby and I’m telling you: dogs are harder to keep up with than my baby!"
Trae Patton/NBCThe blind auditions continued on NBC's The Voice Tuesday night. Christina Aguilera, Adam Levine, Blake Shelton and Pharrell Williams once again sat in their rotating chairs as they listened to more singers and continued to build their teams.
Tuesday’s show included a U.S. Army soldier who started singing in the West Point Band as a means of jump-starting his singing career. He received a four-chair turnaround.
At the conclusion of Tuesday's blind auditions, Blake added four more artists to his team, for a total of 11. Pharrell added two more, bringing his total to 10. Christina tacked on four more artists, bringing the total number of members on her team to 11. Adam picked up three more artists, for a total of 11.
Here are the highlights of Tuesday's blind auditions:
Ashley Morgan, 26, is a backup singer looking to move to the front of the stage. She sang Whitney Houston’s “I Wanna Dance with Somebody (Who Loves Me)” and got Pharrell and Blake to turn around. After telling the coaches she wanted to make music that makes an impact on the world, Shelton insisted country can change people’s lives. However, Pharrell’s assertion that her talent and experience is just what the show is looking for, convinced her to choose his team.
Koryn Hawthorne, 16, counts her mom, a single parent who raised the singer and her brother, as her biggest inspiration. Koryn said her mom is her biggest supporter. By turning a chair, Koryn hoped to prove everything her mother’s done for her hasn’t been in vain. She tackled Emeli Sandé’s “My Kind of Love” and convinced Christina and Pharrell to turn their chairs. Pharrell said she had talent but showed humility. As Pharrell and Christina tried to convince Koryn to join their respective teams, Pharrell hugged Christina to show it was just a friendly competition between them. Then Adam poked fun by hugging Blake. Koryn picked Christina.
Lexi Dávila, 17, dedicated her performance to her late grandfather, a nightclub singer who she says would’ve been proud to see her auditioning for a spot in the competition. Her version of Selena’s “Dreaming of You” got Adam and Blake to push their buttons. Levine didn’t think her performance was perfect, but felt much of that was due to her youth and a touch of nerves. He also thought there were moments that were spectacular. Shelton agreed, noting that she need help to overcome her nerves, something he excels at. She picked Adam.
Next up, was Spokane, Washington, native Brenna Yaeger, who grew up in a log cabin her dad built. They eventually moved out of the cabin after her parents divorced, and it inspired her song choice, Miranda Lambert’s “The House That Built Me.” Adam pushed his button, as did Blake. Levine, noticing the 21-year-old was shaking, walked over and hugged her. Shelton noted that it took a lot of nerve to tackle a song that was so close to his heart, but she pulled it off. She chose Blake’s team.
Jeremy Gaynor, 30, decided to follow in his father and grandfather’s footsteps and join the military. He's in the Army and is the male lead vocalist for the West Point Band. He performed an R&B-infused version of The Carpenters' “Superstar” that got Christina to immediately turn her chair around, with Adam, Pharrell and Blake eventually following suit. Shelton called the contestant “a stud,” as well as a great singer. He acknowledged he may not seem like the perfect coach for Gaynor, but insisted he could “carry [Jeremy] through the gauntlet of The Voice.” The other coaches played up Jeremy’s military background, pointing out the strong work ethic they share. Adam said the “charm” of how Gaynor performed added to his vocal gift. Christina said her father was an army sergeant and she emphasized her R&B roots. Pharrell said Jeremy was living his dream and assured the singer he was on his way. Gaynor chose Team Aguilera.
Country singer Jack Gregori practiced law and ran a real estate title company, until it went bust several years ago as a result of the financial crisis. Jack decided to follow his dream and pursue a music career. He tackled Johnny Cash’s “Ring of Fire" and managed to convince only Adam to push his button. Adam praised Gregori’s “true baritone voice.” Shelton noted that Gregori would give Adam a chance to do something he’d been dreaming of for a while -– beat him with a country singer. Gregori is on Team Adam.
The next contestant, Briar Jonnie, hails from a town in Mississippi that’s so small it doesn’t even have a grocery store. For her blind audition, she chose Beyoncé’s “Take a Bow,” convincing Blake and Pharrell to turn their chairs around. Blake praised Briar’s vibrato and said they were a perfect match because they both came from small towns. Pharrell said he heard someone who could sing, but also heard some nerves and promised he could cure them. Briar picked Pharrell as her coach.
Brian Johnson started pursuing music in college, but put his career on hold to help out his dad, who was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. His dream to have Adam turn around and become his Voice coach came true when Levine immediately pressed his button as Johnson sang Rod Stewart’s “Someone Like You.” As an added bonus, Blake also turned his chair around. Adam called the performance “engaging.” Blake noted Brian sang with heart and made it look easy. Blake really scored points with Brian by noting that he didn’t have anyone like him on his team. It was that statement that convinced Brian to change his mind and choose Blake.
The last artist of the show was Oklahoma native, Corey Kent White. White revealed the moment that changed his life was having Willie Nelson invite him onstage to sing “Milk Cow Blues” with him during one of his concerts. Corey chose Zac Brown Band’s “Chicken Fried” for his blind audition and got Blake and Pharrell to turn their chairs around. Blake, who also hails from Oklahoma, mentioned that he coached another pair of former Voice contestants and fellow Okies, The Swon Brothers. Pharrell wasn’t going down without a fight though. He walked over to Corey and reminded him that he pushed his button first. Adam got into the debate, noting that Blake only coached The Swon Brothers to a third place finish. Corey’s Oklahoma roots ran too deep though, and he went with Blake.
The blind auditions on The Voice will continue Monday at 8 p.m. Eastern time on NBC.
ABC/Rick PowellFresh off her bravura performance celebrating the 50th anniversary of The Sound of Music at the Oscars last month, Lady Gaga is set to commemorate another, more solemn high-profile 50th anniversary. The singer will perform Saturday at this year's annual commemoration of the famed Selma-to-Montgomery, Alabama, civil rights marches which began March 7, 1965.
According to AL.com, Gaga will perform after a speech by President Obama at Selma, Alabama's annual Bridge Crossing Jubilee. The event marks the "Bloody Sunday" march when 600 unarmed protesters were attacked by police at the city's Edmund Pettus Bridge, galvanizing public support for the Voting Rights Act.
Gaga's "Do Want U Want" duet partner R. Kelly also will perform, and U2's Bono is expected to make an appearance, although whether or not the singer, still recovering from a cycling injury, will perform is unclear.
Former president George W. Bush and members of the cast of the Oscar-nominated film, Selma, which depicts events surrounding the marches, also are expected to attend as will American Idol winner Ruben Studdard.
Anniversary events begin Thursday and run through Monday. Participants will reenact the “Bloody Sunday” march.
Eliot Lee Hazel/RCA RecordsIs Chris Brown a proud papa?
TMZ is reporting that Chris is the father of a nine-month-old girl whose mom is a former model named Nia. The website says Chris has known Nia, 31, for years, but is not currently romantically involved with her.
It's unclear what kind of support Chris is providing the child. TMZ says the 25-year-old singer is happy that he's a parent.
Chris has recently been spotted with his on-again, off-again girlfriend, Karrueche Tran.
Jeff Daly/NBCLet's get one thing straight: One Direction isn't breaking up. But that doesn't mean the guys can't do a few things on the side here and there. For example, Zayn Malik has recorded a song with a top British producer...and 1D's label boss Simon Cowell doesn't have a problem with it.
Naughty Boy, best known in the U.S. for the song "La La La," which featured a then-unknown Sam Smith on vocals, tells the British paperThe Sun, "Zayn is going to feature on my next album. We’re making music and having fun. This is just like a side gig and I don’t think there is anything wrong with it."
"It’s a good time for Zayn to showcase what he really can do," he adds. "I don’t think that is being fully exploited within the band because there are five people and it needs to be balanced out. They all have something to show the world as individuals. They can always come back together and do their thing. I don’t think they will ever split up."
Naughty Boy, whose last album featured Sam, Ed Sheeran, Bastille and Emeli Sande, tells the Sun that Simon Cowell is fine with the lads branching out.
"Simon’s very happy with the song and supports the whole thing....I know Simon loves every one of them and wants them to stay together," reveals the producer. "I still think there’s nothing wrong with trying different things. They are all experimenting and dabbling but I think the band will be together for the next 20 years.”
Dana Edelson/NBCWith a baby on the way, it seems Justin Timberlake and Jessica Biel are closer than ever. Justin posted the sweetest birthday message for his pregnant wife Tuesday.
The singer and dad-to-be uploaded a cute photo of the smiling couple to Instagram, along with the caption, “Happy Bday to the sweetest, most GORGEOUS, goofiest, most BAD-ASS chick I know. You make me smile 'til it hurts. I love you like crazy! --Your Huz.”
Jessica, who turned 33 Tuesday, is reportedly due to give birth in April. Last week, Justin surprised her on the New Orleans set of her new movie The Devil and the Deep Blue Sea. And over the weekend, the two were spotted on a cozy double date with Jessica’s co-star Mary Steenburgen and her husband Ted Danson.
Credit: Harper SmithEver wonder just how much a smash hit song is worth? The ongoing copyright infringement suit over "Blurred Lines," is offering a glimpse at hit music finances, and yes, it's big money.
An accounting statement revealed in court shows that the biggest song of 2013 generated more than $16.6 million in profits, of which Thicke received more than $5.6 million. Pharrell, who co-wrote, produced and appeared on the song, earned more than $5.1 million from it; while T.I.'s guest verse was worth more than $700,000 to him.
Testimony is proceeding in a Los Angeles court in a suit brought by the family of Marvin Gaye accusing Thicke and his co-writers of plagiarizing Gaye's 1977 hit "Got to Give It Up" for "Blurred Lines."
In addition to seeking a big chunk of the $16 million that "Blurred Lines" has earned, the Gaye family is seeking some portion of Thicke's touring profits as well as damages of as much as $40 million arguing that "Blurred Lines" has reduced licensing value of "Got to Give It Up."
Pharrell is due on the stand Wednesday.
Thicke also has a second song to defend -- the family is also alleging that Thicke's "Love After War" misappropriated Gaye's "After the Dance."
Vincent Perini/222 Recordings/Interscope RecordsNoel Gallagher, formerly of British superstar rockers Oasis, has been randomly attacking pop stars in a variety of interviews lately...and his latest targets are Maroon 5 and Taylor Swift.
Noel, who earlier this year went after Ed Sheeran, saying, "I can’t live in a world where Ed Sheeran sells out Wembley stadium,” disses Adam Levine and crew in a new interview with Vogue magazine.
"As long as the music’s good, nobody cares about what you f**ing wear," says Gallagher, as part of a discourse on music and fashion. "If your songs are OK, then your songs will seem better if you look good -- like those f**wits from Maroon 5. The tattoos take your mind off the fact that they’re s**t. OK?"
Later on in the interview, Gallagher gets another dig in: he says, "Stagecraft is beneath me. That guy from Maroon 5 -- he needs stagecraft."
As for Taylor, he attacks her in an interview with Rolling Stone. When the magazine says that many have praised her songwriting skills, Gallagher scoffs, "Who says that? Her parents?" When the Rolling Stone writer responds, "Lots of people," Gallagher says, "Who's 'people?' Name these people. You're f**ing lying. She seems like a nice girl, but no one has ever said those words, and you f**king know it."
Also in the Rolling Stone interview, Gallagher also puts down One Direction. He calls them "lovely lads," but adds, "I have difficulties with people who don't write their own songs, who've got a team of songwriters who work for your record label."
But when the interviewer points out that One Direction actually does co-write many of their own songs, and adds that may of the biggest and most legendary Motown stars had a team of writers at their record label providing them with material, Gallagher doesn't buy it.
"If you're trying to insinuate that what's going on now is akin to what was going on at Motown -- what, were you out late eating magic mushrooms?" he says. "Not equivalent. Not in the slightest."
Gallagher currently has a solo career. With Oasis in the '90s, he scored hits like "Wonderwall" and "Champagne Supernova."
ABC/Lou RoccoYou can’t deny Taylor Swift has widespread appeal. Her songs have the power to soothe even the crankiest babies.
The singer posted a video to Twitter Monday of a 6-month-old baby named Rosie who only stops crying when Taylor’s song “Blank Space” is playing. Taylor wrote in response to the YouTube video: “THIS IS THE BEST THING I HAVE EVER SEEN.”
It's good to know Taylor has a way with babies. She was just named godmother to her pal Jamie King’s yet-to-be-born second child. This trick might come in handy if she babysits!
Courtesy of Comedy CentralThe latest promo for the Comedy Central Roast of Justin Bieber was released, and it spoofs Justin’s Calvin Klein ad.
In the clip, a shirtless Justin plays the drums and poses, just like in his real Calvin ad -- but this time, Roastmaster General Jeff Ross plays the role of the female model. Jeff, wearing a long blonde wig and a shirt that exposes his less-than-toned tummy, proceeds to make Justin very uncomfortable.
“Who is this guy?” Justin finally asks. “Hey man, I’m your worst nightmare,” Jeff responds.
The Comedy Central Roast of Justin Bieber airs March 30. Comedian Kevin Hart will serve as host.
ABC/Richard HarbaughYou don’t just ask Miley Cyrus to prom. You twerk-ask her.
High school student Andrew Cain from New Brunswick, Canada made a YouTube video asking Miley to be his prom date. In the clip posted Monday, he gets some of his pals to vouch for him and further makes his case by demonstrating his twerking skills and showing off his Miley shrine. He ends the video by getting down on one knee, bouquet of roses in hand, and officially asking the pop star to the prom.
Miley’s been an in-demand prom date for years. Last year, Phoenix teen Matt Peterson tried to get Miley to be his date. She declined, but invited him to the Arizona stop on her tour. He attended the concert and she serenaded him on stage. Not a bad deal. Let’s hope Andrew has similar luck!
Matthew WelchThere's no "maybe" about it: Carly Rae Jepsen is back, with a brand new, super-catchy single, "I Really Like You." She debuted the tune on ABC's Good Morning America on Monday, and she'll perform it again on Jimmy Kimmel Live! on March 5. But why was it the perfect song to launch her return to the spotlight? "I liked the joy in it," Carly tells ABC Radio.
The song, with its repetitive chorus, captures that special moment when "like" it just about to become "love." "I think everyone has been in that place where it’s...you’re not quite ready to call it love, but it’s so much more than like," Carly says. "And you really, really, really like them."
"There are six 'reallys' [in the chorus],'” she laughs. "'I really like' you times six is one more before love, I figure. Seven gets a little overkill. Six [is] just, just [the] tipping point!"
"It sort of chose itself," Carly says, explaining why it's her first single. "It’s sort of one of those things: you go into the studio, you write handfuls of music and you just kind of come out and show everyone, show friends, show family, show label mates. And this song really raised its hand."
She adds, "It was that song that people could sing right away back to you, and I think coming from such a big break, we wanted to come back with something strong. And I liked the joy in it. I think that that was sort of a good start too."
"I Really Like You" has a very retro-'80s sound, and Carly says that was sort of her blueprint when it comes to her upcoming album. "The whole heart and soul of the album is very throwback with, like, a new twist to it," she explains.
Carly co-wrote "I Really Like You" with Peter Svensson from '90s alt-pop band The Cardigans, best known for their super-catchy hit "Lovefool." Some of her other collaborators on the new album -- with whom she worked in New York City -- include Jack Antonoff of fun.; Canadian pop duo Tegan & Sara; Greg Kurstin, who's worked with Kelly Clarkson, Pink and Sia; and super-producer Max Martin.
"I think the rest of the record will be more of a surprise," she tells ABC Radio. "I think this particular song is a bridge to that and I think that having time in New York was really the reason behind that sort of change in feel and that decision to go pure '80s and to kind of experiment."
The video for "I Really Like You" will premiere in the coming days, and it features a special guest star: Tom Hanks. Carly explains what the Oscar-winning actor is doing in the clip.
"It’s sort of the day in the life of Tom Hanks. It’s sort of a video inside of a video," she tells ABC Radio. "He’s on his way to my music video -- to participate and just be awesome -- and he just sort of wakes up singing the song. And he’s getting ready for it, and practicing his dance moves and gargling…I don’t know, all the usual, amazing little day-to-day things that make him so awesome!"
RCA RecordsKellyClarkson's new album, Piece by Piece, is in stores today -- and starting in July, Kelly will be on the road.
The singer announced her Piece by Piece Tour 2015 Tuesday morning on ABC's Good Morning America. The 36-date outing begins July 11 in Hershey, Pennsylvania and wraps up September 20 in Camden, New Jersey. Pentatonix and Eric Hutchinson will open for Kelly on select dates.
If you're a member of Kelly's free online fan club, you'll get an early crack at the tickets, which go on sale to the general public March 14. You can find out more about Kelly's fan club at KellyClarkson.com. Citi cardmembers also get early access, beginning March 10.
Here are Kelly's Piece by Piece Tour dates:
7/11 -- Hershey, PA, Hersheypark Stadium 7/12 -- Mansfield, MA, Xfinity Center 7/14 -- Holmdel, NJ, PNC Bank Arts Center 7/16 -- New York, NY, Radio City Music Hall 7/17 -- New York, NY, Radio City Music Hall 7/19 -- Pittsburgh, PA, First Niagara Pavilion 7/21 -- Darien Center, NY, Darien Lake Performing Arts Center 7/23 -- Uncasville, CT, Mohegan Sun Arena 7/25 -- Toronto, ON, Molson Canadian Amphitheatre 7/26 -- Clarkston, MI, DTE Energy Music Theatre 7/28 -- Cincinnati, OH, Riverbend Music Center 7/30 -- Indianapolis, IN, Klipsch Music Center 8/1 -- Rosemont, IL, Allstate Arena 8/2 -- St. Louis, MO, Hollywood Casino Amphitheatre 8/4 -- St. Paul, MN, Xcel Energy Center 8/6 -- Denver, CO, Pepsi Center 8/8 -- Salt Lake City, UT, USANA Amphitheatre 8/10 -- Portland, OR, Moda Center 8/12 -- Seattle, WA, KeyArena 8/15 -- Las Vegas, NV, Mandalay Bay Events Center 8/16 -- San Diego, CA, Viejas Arena 8/19 -- Los Angeles, CA, Staples Center 8/21 -- Wheatland, CA, Toyota Amphitheatre 8/23 -- Mountain View, CA, Shoreline Amphitheatre 8/25 -- Phoenix, AZ, Ak-Chin Pavilion 8/27 -- Albuquerque, NM, Isleta Amphitheater 8/29 -- Austin, TX, Austin360 Amphitheater 8/30 -- Dallas, TX, Gexa Energy Pavilion 9/1 -- Houston, TX, Cynthia Woods Mitchell Pavilion 9/3 -- Little Rock, AR, Verizon Arena 9/5 -- Nashville, TN, Bridgestone Arena 9/10 -- Atlanta, GA, Aaron's Amphitheatre at Lakewood 9/12 -- Vienna, VA, Wolf Trap National Park For The Performing Arts 9/13 -- Vienna, VA, Wolf Trap National Park For The Performing Arts 9/15 -- Tampa, FL, MIDFLORIDA Credit Union Amphitheatre 9/17 -- West Palm Beach, FL, Coral Sky Amphitheatre 9/19 -- Raleigh, NC, Walnut Creek Amphitheatre 9/20 -- Camden, NJ, Susquehanna Bank Center
RCA RecordsKelly Clarkson's new album Piece by Piece arrives today, and fans will be happy to hear that she'll be following that up with a world tour. Her eight-month-old daughter River is coming along with her, of course -- in a custom-designed, kid-friendly tour bus.
Speaking to Billboard, Kelly says, "I already designed my bus -- my bus is already ready, and we have a whole crib on there, a whole kids section for our other two kids. So we're ready for the tour, which is starting this summer, and then we go to the rest of the world after America." Kelly's "other two kids" are a boy and a girl from her husband Brandon Blackstock's first marriage.
She adds, "I don't think being a mom needs to slow you down. If anything, it just makes you more productive."
Kelly does reveal, though, that she has the help of an "amazing" nanny named Allie, who, she says, "makes it possible for me to be a working mom that gets to stay involved in my child's life."
Kelly appears on ABC's Good Morning America on Tuesday.
Douglas Gorenstein/NBCKellyClarkson visited The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon Monday to plug her new album, Piece by Piece, but she ended up singing a lot more than just one song from the disc.
Fallon noted the recent report in which Clarkson reportedly told BBC Radio she had a problem getting other artists to perform duets with her. Clarkson later tweeted that she was joking.
Nonetheless, Fallon responded by telling the audience he'd love to do a duet with Kelly. She then joined him for a "History of Duets," in which the two performed a medley of the greatest duets of all time, including Sonny and Cher's "I Got You Babe," Elton John and Kiki Dee's "Don't Go Breaking My Heart," and Dolly Parton and Kenny Rogers' "Islands in the Stream."
Later in the show, Clarkson performed "Heartbeat Song," a track off her new album.
Trae Patton/NBCThe blind auditions continued on NBC's The Voice Tuesday night. Christina Aguilera, Adam Levine, Blake Shelton and Pharrell Williams once again sat in their rotating chairs as they listened to more singers and continued to build their teams.
Tuesday’s show included the competition’s oldest contestant so far this season, a 52-year-old former executive chef at the famed Improv comedy club in Los Angeles.
At the conclusion of Tuesday's blind auditions, Blake added three more artists to his team, for a total of seven. Pharrell added three more, bringing his total to eight. Christina tacked on two more artists, bringing the total number of members on her team to seven. Adam picked up five more artists, for a total of eight.
In a lighthearted moment, Adam pretended to deliver a blind audition by singing Elton John's "Tiny Dancer." He got all three coaches to turn their chairs around. He selected Christina. Blake joked that the only reason he turned his chair around was because he "wanted to see what the freak looked like."
Here are the highlights of Tuesday's blind auditions:
Kentucky native, Kelsie May, a 15-year-old with a throwback sound, noted that she lost one of her friends to cancer. She credits watching his brave battle as her inspiration to pursue her dream of being a country singer. She got Blake, Pharrell and Christina to turn their chairs with her version of Loretta Lynn’s “You’re Lookin’ at Country.” Christina had started singing at the age of seven and she used that experience to try and get the young singer. Pharrell called Kelsie special because she was already so clear on what direction she wanted to take with her music. Blake, predictably, dropped names of The Voice winners he’s coached to victory, including last year’s champ, Craig Wayne Boyd. Kelsie made the obvious choice and went with Blake.
Kimberly Nichole earned the nickname “The Rock Ballerina" for her custom-made tutus. After putting her singing career on the back burner to pursue a career in the fashion industry, she returned to music, landing a hosting gig at a trendy New York City club. She belted out Ike and Tina Turner’s “Nutbush City Limits" and convinced Blake and Pharrell to push their buttons. Pharrell said he felt her soul when she sang, adding her voice was “amazing.” Blake, at a loss for a strong pitch to counter Pharrell’s, noted he’s “not a soul singer,” but “has a soul,” and that he loved her. It wasn’t enough, as Pharrell nabbed Kimberly for his team.
Next up, was Fargo, North Dakota, native, Michael Leier, singing Pearl Jam’s version of the J. Frank Wilson and the Cavaliers’ classic, “Last Kiss.” Blake and Adam turned their chairs, leading to a “charm fest” starting with Adam, who noted that even though Leier was influenced by Pearl Jam’s lead singer Eddie Vedder, he added his own touch to the song. Blake answered by saying Levine’s pitch seemed to be more about Vedder than Michael. It was futile, as Michael picked Adam. Michael admitted later that before the audition, he was hoping to land on Adam’s team.
Travis Ewing is a professional one-man band from Lafayette, Louisiana. His love of music started in the seventh grade when a teacher helped him overcome his shyness and encouraged him to sing. The teacher then surprised Travis with a taped message to cheer him on. Travis sang Destiny Child’s “Say My Name” and immediately got Christina to turn her chair around. Blake and Pharrell eventually followed suit. Aguilera loved the “silkiness” and “texture” of Ewing’s voice, as well as his arrangement of the song, noting it was “outside the box.” Shelton fired back that he had a good track record coaching non-country artists. Pharrell told Travis that he would be a fan, as well as a mentor and would love a shot at “mixing it up.” Ewing chose Team Pharrell.
Sonic, 23, got a record deal when she was 14 years old, but it never panned out for the San Francisco native. She also revealed that she’s deaf in one ear, but refused to let that become a disability. Her version of Sam Smith’s “Money on My Mind” convinced Aguilera and Levine to push their buttons, even though both acknowledged that the performance “fell apart” somewhere in the middle. However, Adam noted that Sonic recovered quickly and hit some difficult notes. Christina applauded Sonic for taking on a “huge challenge” with the song. Sonic elected to join Christina’s team.
Taking the stage next was 18-year-old Jacob Rummell, who’s been singing his entire life. He’d love to pursue it as a career, but admits he “doesn’t know what [he’s] doing.” Learning from a coach, he adds, would be “an amazing opportunity.” Rummell tackled Bruno Mars’ “Count on Me” and got Levine and Shelton to turn their chairs around. Blake confessed he thought Jacob was a girl before he turned his chair, and added that that's what he likes about the show the most. Adam argued that he had more in common musically with Jacob and compared him to a young Michael Jackson. Rummell surprised all the judges by choosing Shelton.
Barry Minniefield, 52, was an executive chef at the Improv comedy club in Los Angeles who eventually opened up his own catering company called No Laughing Matter. Barry said he became chummy with some of the comedians at the club, and counts Jay Leno among his famous friends. Leno even sent Barry a taped message to wish him good luck. Barry eventually retired from cooking to pursue music. His version of Billy Paul’s “Me and Mrs. Jones” got Adam to turn his chair around at the last second. He joins Team Adam.
The final act of the night was Brooklyn, New York, native and current UCLA music student India Carney, who took on Billy Joel’s “New York State of Mind.” She got all four coaches to turn their chairs around and received a standing ovation from all of them. An intense battle between the coaches began with Christina noting she needed to have the singer on her team because Carney is a “vocal beast.” Shelton said he fell in love with India’s voice and was a fan, as well as a potential coach. Pharrell begged Carney to join his team, and vowed to try and steal her away from whoever did wind up with her. Adam, noting that even though his team was nearly full, he had to push his button for her Carney, adding, she was “going to the end of this thing and I want to be on that train." India picked Christina.
The blind auditions on The Voice will continue Tuesday night at 8 p.m. Eastern time on NBC.
Christian Petersen/Getty ImagesWhen Katy Perry headlined the Super Bowl last month, her guests included Lenny Kravitz and Missy Elliott. But it turns out Katy wanted to bring another guest on as well: Snoop Dogg. However, the NFL nixed the idea, she claims, because of the "hate" he'd allegedly bring to the party
Speaking to Elle magazine for its March issue, Katy claims that the NFL said she couldn't have Snoop -- her collaborator on her hit "California Gurls" -- on stage with her because of what she calls the "Iggy Azalea thing." Katy is referring to the feud that Snoop and Iggy had last fall, where he dissed her appearance on Instagram and then posted an obscenity-filled video further insulting and threatening her. He later apologized.
"Not that that was it -- that was just the tipping point," Katy adds. "You can't have that kind of hate at the Super Bowl. They already have enough female-hate problems; they don't need any more."
It's worth noting that Katy and Iggy are friends; she co-wrote Iggy's hit "Black Widow" in fact.
In other Katy Perry post-Super Bowl news, she's debuted some merchandise that fans will definitely want to sink their teeth into. "YOU CAN NOW BE A PROPER #LEFTSHARK WITH THIS OFFICIAL, GLORIOUS #LEFTSHARK ONESIE," Katy tweeted.
She included a link to her online store, where for the low, low price of $129.99 you can now purchase a onesie that will let you look just like Katy's goofy costumed dance partner at her Super Bowl halftime show. The garment says "Katy Perry" across the back, and boasts an "all-over photographic print" made "using a special sublimation technique to provide a vivid graphic image."
Photos by Inez and Vinoodh. (PRNewsFoto/Def Jam Recordings)Kanye West released his new single "All Day,” featuring Paul McCartney, to iTunes Monday night. The song is from Kanye's upcoming album So Help Me God.
The release of the five-minute-long studio version of "All Day" follows Kanye's live performance of the tune at last week's BRIT Awards 2015.
McCartney sings and whistles on the song. “All Day” also features a vocal from Theophilus London and a rap from U.K. artist Allan Kingdom.
West and McCartney have also collaborated on the ballad “Only One,” which features the former Beatle on keyboard, and on "FourFiveSeconds" with Rihanna.
A release date for Kanye's album has not been revealed.